A First Timer’s Report from Oktoberfest

While I’ve been to, and organized, my fair share of local chapter events over the past couple of years, last month was the first time I’ve attended the club’s national annual event, Oktoberfest!
Due to the time and travel investment, I tried to get the most out of the event—here’s what my week looked like:


Arrive around noon, check into the event hotel, register and unpack. Enjoy Spaten hospitality in the beer garden at the hotel. Make sure glass is full before heading to the first timer’s meeting for a briefing, orientation and introductions, then on to the welcome banquet!


I volunteered to help with the concours. This was something I had no prior experience with, but was accepted and paired with a more experienced person to judge the “race” clean entries. Turns out volunteering also got me a free shirt and an invitation to a Wednesday evening reception. Dodged rain while the competitors prepared their cars. Also took test drive in a brand new 5 Series – nice. . Rain stopped before “rags down,” then went out to rub Q-tips and white gloves over a couple of race prepared cars. Evening was more Spaten hospitality, after which things get a little fuzzy.


First driving school day! Three sessions on the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, followed by the volunteer reception, and even more Spaten .


Autocross, and the first time I’ve done it without needed to replace a fender liner! Course was laid out such that novices like myself were unlikely to get lost among the cones. Unfortunately, I’ve about as much sophistication at autocross as a hammer. Was fun though—eight runs for the day!


Out early for a second day at Mid-Ohio, followed by the awards banquet in the evening .


Last day at Mid-Ohio, with a BBQ that evening near by .

Drove home Sunday, and felt like I needed to sleep for three days! For someone my wife characterizes as “socially indifferent,” I also used up a lot of my socialization reserves! If you decide to attend O’fest for the first time next year, you can make your own decisions about how many activities you want to cram into the week, but I don’t know as I’d have done my first time any different.

As for next year, Laguna Seca is a long way away, but driving there is a bucket list kind of event… we’ll see!

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